By Annie Hollon
After a year of chaos like 2020, a new year can be the clean slate PR students need to learn something new, find a new skill or grow their professional networks. Rather than gym- and health food-oriented New Year’s resolutions, here are some for students entering the profession to consider tackling this year.
Don’t Play Routine Roulette
While it’s easy to sleep in until nearly noon and do your work at the witching hour (guilty!), establishing a more stable routine can help you maximize your days and free up your evenings. Getting a consistent early start to your day can give you back daylight hours you’d otherwise miss and get you up and moving well before your afternoon Zoom lecture. Besides, no one wants to send emails at 11:30 at night, let alone receive them.
If you aren’t a fan of your current organization system for courses and extracurriculars, play around with some options that work for you! Whether it be a color-coded Google or Apple calendar or customized bullet journal, there are plenty of resources to stay on top of your tasks and responsibilities. A personal new favorite of mine, alongside my paper planner, is Notion, a digital organizer that you get free premium access to as a student. Totally customizable, it's a great digital avenue to get your plans and life in order.
Read All About It
The quick pace of the news cycle can seem overwhelming, but there are plenty of resources to keep you up to date on what’s happening in the world or in the PR profession. Newsletters are a great way to get a quick bite of what’s happening in the news cycle. Newspapers and industry publications such as The New York Times and PR Daily offer them for free and make it easier than ever to know what’s going on in the world.
Get Connected, For Free!
The education connection is real and can get you places if you maximize on it. Networking has never been more accessible, so look into your alumni network and reach out to others in your industry of choice. Through mentorship programs at UA, such as the Oakley Society and UA PRSSA’s in-house peer mentorship program, you can make socially distant connections and professional relationships to serve as a second set of eyes on job applications or share perspectives on the profession.
Be Proactive in PRSSA
Zoom fatigue is real, so don’t let a great learning experience or connection slip through your fingers as a result. At Chapter meetings and Lunch & Learn events, do your best to stay engaged and interact with the presenter. Whether it be actively asking questions toward the end or messaging your fellow PRSSA members about the presentation later on, it can help you retain the information better and ensure you get something out of it.
Annie Hollon is a senior at The University of Alabama double majoring in public relations and English. She serves as VP of promotions for UA PRSSA and is also involved in Alice Magazine, Capstone Agency and Mosaic Magazine. You can contact Annie on Twitter or through LinkedIn.